Julia Hobson is one of the most experienced mountain bike guides out there. Spending her summers guiding in the Alps and her winters in the Lake District, she knows more than anyone that you need to be prepared when heading out into the hills. Julia gives us her top tips on what sort of things you should be looking to have in your backpack
Mountain Bike Backpack Essentials
When you’re lucky enough to spend your life riding your bike every day, it’s easy to become complacent about the contents of your riding bag and what you take with you on each ride. The bag is always packed, ready to go at a moment’s notice, with little thought about changing what’s inside it from day to day. On the plus side, this means less faffing before a ride, putting essential bits together. On the downside, it means I’m often carrying far more than I need (much to the amusement of friends at the size of my “guiding pack”), and when I do have a sort out, will normally find some season-old half-eaten snack, or even worse, mouldy banana skin, buried underneath the things which always live in there!
But I find it’s a question I’m constantly asked by many of the people I guide on trips. “What should I be carrying with me?” The answer to this is that it really does depend. Depend on where you are, how far you’re riding, who you’re riding with, what the season is, and lots of other variables. But there are also some staple items which should probably be in there no matter what you’re doing.